Field of Science

What is biodynamic wine?

What is biodynamic wine?  A reasonable question, but TPP had never heard of such a thing.  Biodynamic is one of those words that doesn’t mean too much and so is subject to appropriation for jargon. Apparently biodynamic wines have done well in blind taste tests. Some poking around the subject suggests that “biodynamic” agriculture is multi-faceted organic agriculture with a big old dose of mystical, magical woo thrown in for good measure.

Yes, seasons are important for farming but not so the ascension of Aquarius "to balance the vital life forces" of your garden.  Multi-faceted organic agriculture is a good thing, and grapes as a perennial crop seem well suited to be grown with soil-improvement techniques, integrated pest management, and the like.  All well and good, but checking the phase of the moon and the astrological sign to determine when to plant, prune, or harvest?  Go for it, but it won’t make one whit of difference.  Although based on ancient beliefs, celestial events affecting vital energies is pure pseudoscience. So why does the wine taste better?  Soils, and weather, and water and all make lots of differences which is why different vintage wines even from the same grapes in the same vineyard differ in taste year to year, so picking a fair basis for comparison is next to impossible.  The organic techniques may make better tasting wine.  Great!   But here’s my bet, a taste comparison between “biodynamic” wine and “organic” wine treated the same way but minus the woo wouldn’t find a consistent difference. But it requires some careful planning and controls or it doesn't prove a thing.


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